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Bombshell Implicates Trump; Warren and Sanders Clash; Storm Takes Aim at Northeast; Trump Signs Phase One Deal with China; Prince Harry Makes Public Appearance. Aired 6:30-7a ET
Aired January 16, 2020 - 06:30 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: So just as the Senate gets ready to begin the impeachment trial against President Trump, an indicted associate of Rudy Giuliani directly implicates the president in this Ukraine scheme at the center of the impeachment.
CNN's Athena Jones is live on Capitol Hill with a preview of what this will mean for today.
ATHENA JONES, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning, Alisyn.
We'll have to wait and see what this Lev Parnas revelations will mean, but I can tell you the wait is almost over. The next phase of impeachment is set to begin in just hours.
JONES (voice over): With the stroke of her pen, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi formally sending impeach into its next phase.
REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): Make it be very clear that this president will be held accountable. That no one is above the law.
JONES: The seven newly appointed House impeachment managers walking the articles of impeachment against President Trump across the Capitol in silence.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: A message from the House of Representatives.
JONES: Before hand delivering them to the Senate.
At noon, they'll return to the Senate chamber to formally present the articles and read them aloud. Then at 2:00 p.m., Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts will swear in all 100 members as jurors for the trial, which is expected to begin next Tuesday. The Senate waiting nearly a month for the articles as Pelosi clashed with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell over the rules of the trial. REP. ADAM SCHIFF (D-CA): This time has given us the ability to show
the American people the necessity of a fair trial, to expose the degree to which McConnell is working hand in hand with the subject of the impeachment, the president.
JONES: So how will this all work? Next week senators will hear the Democratic impeachment managers present their case, and then President Trump's defense, for 24 hours each, spread out over several days.
Senators will then get their chance to ask both teams questions over a couple of days, for a total of 16 hours.
CNN has learned the Senate's impeachment resolution guarantees there will be a vote on whether to hear from witnesses.
There is growing pressure on moderate Republicans who could shape the trial.
SEN. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN (D-MD): Senate Republicans will face that very important vote and that will be a signal to the country as to whether or not they want a fair trial or they want to participate in rigging the trial.
JONES: Representing the Democrats, Pelosi picked seven lawmakers that she says represents the diversity of her caucus, including key players in the House's impeachment investigation, Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff and Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler.
REP. JERRY NADLER (D-NY): We are preparing for the trial by going over all the evidence, the overwhelming evidence, that was presented in the House.
Will the Senate be complicit in the president's crimes? Will the Senate hold a real trial or will they deny witnesses and evidence?
JONES: Senate Republicans are eager for the trial to begin to clear President Trump.
SEN. TED CRUZ (R-TX): The Senate will conduct a fair trial.
Once the president is able to defend himself, I am confident that the result of that is the president will be acquitted.
JONES: Now, as you noted, one of the -- among the big questions this morning is how these new revelations, these bombshell revelations coming from Lev Parnas, will impact the Senate trial. Will the senators call witnesses? And will they allow new evidence that emerged after the House impeached the president to be introduced in the trial?
CAMEROTA: Yes, those are the burning questions. Then we'll get answers, perhaps, right now.
Thank you very much, Athena.
Joining us now, CNN political analyst Margaret Talev, she's a politics and White House editor for "Axios," and Rachael Bade, she's a congressional reporter for "The Washington Post."
So, Rachael, I know it's only 6:35 in the morning, but how does Mitch -- how can Mitch McConnell, today, after hearing what we just played this morning with Anderson Cooper's interview with Lev Parnas -- this is all new information, Lev Parnas goes further than ever before -- how can they, today, say, no thank you, we don't need to hear from witnesses or any of that new information?
RACHAEL BADE, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Yes, I predict that this is going to come -- go in one ear and out the other for Mitch McConnell. I mean he is very much gung-ho on this no witness strategy. I don't think this is going to change his calculous at all.
The real question is, does it convince enough moderate Senate Republicans, who are either up for re-election in 2020 in swing states, or want to show some sort of degree of independence from the president, are there enough of them to break with Republican leaders and back Democrats on calling new witnesses?
I think that the Parnas interviews and the documents, they really underscore how much we don't know still about Ukraine. I mean this notion that Ambassador Marie Yovanovitch was surveilled by Trump associates, that's something we hadn't heard before. And I was, you know, covering all those depositions and sitting in the hearing room when we were -- they were bringing in all these witnesses. That's a new fact. He says Vice President Mike Pence was in on this too and knew about it. That's -- that's potentially a new thread people need to pull. And then this other third notion that he also delivered a message to Ukraine that this was a quid pro quo, we need an investigation for you to get military aid, I mean that's a second person beyond Gordon Sondland who also delivered that message.
So I -- obviously, this increases pressure on Senate Republicans. I don't think it is going to sway Mitch McConnell at all. But it certainly gives credence to Democrats' argument right now.
JOHN BERMAN, CNN ANCHOR: Whether or not it sways them, Margaret, I will tell you this is exactly what Republicans in December were telling me they feared most, which was the unknown. We don't know, they would tell me, what else is going to come out. And they meant it. We just don't know. Particularly from Giuliani world. That is what made them most nervous.
And this does make things uncomfortable for the likes of Susan Collins and Murkowski and Corey Gardner.
Susan Collins, her response yesterday was interesting, which is, well, if it's so bad, why didn't we hear about it before? It's almost as if the worse or the more condemning the evidence is, the more you say, well, why didn't the House get that?
MARGARET TALEV, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: Well, you know, John, that's right. And I think the House Democrats had the strategic decision to make, which is like, should we hang onto this longer, test some stuff in court and see what else happens, or should they move the process along? They made the decision to move the process along until right before Christmas when then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi chose to hold onto everything. And over the last few weeks, there's been a lot of speculation about, did she hurt herself by waiting? Was it a good thing to wait?
But as we saw with the turning over of that trove of documents from Lev Parnas and his attorneys to the House over the weekend, that when you wait, you don't -- you know, it's possible that more stuff will come out.
And so now I feel like even though the impeachment trial is about to start, like, in a few hours, we're all still waiting for the water to boil. What is the White House going to do? They're being still a little bit opaque in terms of discussing their entire legal team. Or whether or not House lawmakers from the GOP side are going to be now brought in onto the Senate trial. What is going to happen with witnesses? And it -- will Lev Parnas -- do Democrats want Lev Parnas to be called? He does have some credibility issues. If witnesses happen, then witnesses could happen on the other side. Do the Bidens end up getting dragged back into this?
And so it is very complex calculations on all sides now. Parnas himself saying he didn't directly talk with the president about this strategy. But the fact that he was engaged or connected with the president so many times on the phone with Giuliani and so many times where Giuliani would say, hang on, and things would go quiet, does suggest that if Democrats and a key number of Republicans in the Senate want to pull that thread, they can. But it's unclear what will happen at the end of it.
CAMEROTA: But to Susan Collins' question about why now, why is this happening, shouldn't the House have dealt with that? Here's the answer. This comes from our reporter, Marshall Cohen (ph). He says, here's the context that Collins is ignoring. The Department of Justice seized Parnas' phones and other materials when he was arrested in October, before he got the House subpoena. Parnas only recently got his devices back from the DOJ and secured permission from a judge to give this stuff to Congress.
So, as soon as Parnas had his text messages back, as soon as a judge said he could give them to Congress, he gave them to the Intel Committee. And that's what we're now just seeing.
TALEV: That's -- yes.
CAMEROTA: So it's not a mystery, Rachael.
BADE: Yes, but I also think that there's, you know, sort of another side of this, which is that House impeachment investigators could have called him in and heard his account firsthand without some of these documents that were sort of caught up in the courts. You know, Democrats privately were sort of grappling with that question when they were sort of at the point of deciding, do we move toward impeachment right now before the holidays or do we want to wait a little longer?
And I think right now this argument that you heard Susan Collins made, the notion that the House didn't do its homework, they should have, you know, fought a little hard to get more evidence, I'm surprised to hear Susan Collins making that argument because she has said she is open to witnesses. But this is going to be a top talking point for Republicans, I think, in the next couple of weeks. I think that that is going to be one of the number one arguments they make to try to shut down new evidence, hearing from witnesses. I mean, you agree with it or not, but to hear Susan Collins make that argument I think is really significant because she's one of the ones that Democrats need to convince.
BERMAN: All right, Rachael Bade, Margaret Talev, thank you very much for being with us this morning.
We're going to talk about this much more over the course of the show. We're just digesting it ourselves. I mean we -- that was the first play from Anderson. This interview was done overnight. We're just getting our first look at it. There's so much new information there. More on that coming up.
There is another story this morning which is equally fascinating. This exchange that we all saw from Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders after the debate. Well, at first, all we did was see it. Now we're hearing what they said. And, frankly, it's explosive. We'll bring you that audio, next.
BERMAN: All right, another bombshell here.
CNN now has the audio from this talked about moment after the Democratic debate. The tense exchange between Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders after they clashed about whether Sanders once told Warren, once in 2018, in a meeting they had whether he told her that a woman could not beat President Trump in 2020. This is the exchange they had.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEN. ELIZABETH WARREN (D-MA), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I think you called me a liar on national TV.
SEN. BERNIE SANDERS (I-VT), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: What?
WARREN: I think you called me a liar on national TV?
SANDERS: No, let's not do it right now. You want to have that discussion, we'll have that discussion.
WARREN: Any time.
SANDERS: You called me a liar. You told me -- all right, let's not do it now.
TOM STEYER (D), PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I don't want to get in the middle of it. I just want to say, hi, Bernie.
SANDERS: Yes, good.
STEYER: It's great (ph) to see you.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CAMEROTA: Oh, boy. I'm uncomfortable.
CNN's MJ Lee broke this story earlier this week and she joins us now.
It just keeps getting worse, to hear that exchange after the debate. That is -- there's a lot of hostility there between them at the moment.
MJ LEE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There is. You know, even before CNN was able to get the audio isolated, just watching their body language, we knew that there was so much tension there, right? Even the fact that when she approached Bernie Sanders, she would not take his hand when he put it out. And then sort of the pointing and the hands going up like we could read the body language and knew there was tension.
But now that there is this audio, it is just stunning to hear a presidential candidate say to another, you called me a liar. It really is stunning. And I think fascinating that this is in such contrast, actually, from how the two of them conducted themselves when this issue came up on the debate stage.
Bernie Sanders, two times, said, I never said that. And at that moment, again, on the debate stage, Warren's response was not to say, are you calling me a liar? All she said specifically related to that conversation was to say he disagreed with me. And then she sort of moved on and pivoted to the broader question of sexism, gender inequality in politics, right?
So the fact that this happened post-debate, obviously she was aware, I assume, that her mic was on. He was aware as well. Still it came out. I'm not pretending to know what her thinking was. We don't have reporting actually from either campaigns. They are not saying anything right now and I think that's telling as well.
But, yes, this is a stunning, stunning moment.
BERMAN: Look, there are questions about gender. There are questions about electability. And there is now this question about honesty. You have two presidential candidates saying -- accusing the others of calling each other liars. I mean there is a question about whose story is right here at this point.
LEE: Right. And I think whenever there is disagreement between presidential candidates, that is significant. And we talk about that a lot in the context of, you know, policy disagreements and what have you. But when it is this personal, it really is significant.
CAMEROTA: It's just not going away yet.
MJ, thank you very much for being here.
All right, another important story.
Prince Harry has just appeared in public for the first time since he announced that he and his wife will be stepping back from some of their royal duties. So what did he say? How did he look? What clues did he give off? We have a live report, next.
BERMAN: This is actually a royal duty.
CAMEROTA: A winter storm is taking aim at the northeast. Snow is on the way, we're told. But let's confirm that with CNN meteorologist Chad Myers.
Is that true, Chad?
CHAD MYERS, AMS METEOROLOGIST: That is true. Hundreds of thousands of your closest relatives and friends will be heading to the north to the ski resorts and they will have new snow this weekend.
Now, there's snow now, but this isn't the storm we're talking about. And we're not breaking news banners here. This is winter. This is what we expect. But I want you to get the timing down right.
This weather is brought to you by Celebrity Cruises. Go to celebrity.com and get your award-winning vacation today.
So here it is. Right now we are seeing some snow, and there will be a lot of wind. If you're flying out of New York City today, there will be wind delays. Same with Boston, D.C., Philadelphia. That's the first storm. There's your wind advisory.
But now we're talking about the next storm. Back out here in the Plains. It will be a snow but also an ice event.
So here it comes, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and then into Saturday, and then on up into New England for Saturday into Sunday, putting down quite a bit of snow.
We will see some four to eight inch snowfall totals. Probably not for New York City.
[06:55:01] I mean you're going to get 103 on the grassy surfaces but that's it.
Something else to watch, though, if you're traveling, there will be an ice event to the south of that. We'll have that for you tomorrow as we update this forecast. It gets closer and closer to New York. It will be right on that line again, 32 and something, John.
BERMAN: Thirty-two and something.
All right, Chad, watching it very closely. Thank you for being with us.
MYERS: You got it.
BERMAN: Time for CNN business now.
President Trump taking a victory lap after signing phase one of a trade deal with China. What does it mean for farmers, manufacturers?
Our chief business correspondent Christine Romans joins us with all that.
CHRISTINE ROMANS, CNN CHIEF BUSINESS CORRESPONDENT: Hi, guys.
Well, President Trump and the Chinese vice premier have inked this phase one trade deal. It's a truce in the trade war that leaves the biggest problems for later.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We are righting the wrongs the past and delivering a future of economic justice and security for American workers, farmers, and families.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: So what's in the deal? China promises to buy an additional $32 billion in farm goods over the next two years, $12.5 billion the first year, $19.5 in the second. In exchange, the U.S. agreed to cut in half tariffs on $120 billion in Chinese goods.
Now, China has not made any specific commitments yet to reduce tariffs imposed on the U.S. The farm commitment starts to make up for what was lost during the trade war. Remember, $28 billion has already been spent bailing out farmers. The president's farm bailout is double the size of the 2009 auto bailout.
Now, China's ag pledge is part of a broader $200 billion package, which include manufacturing goods and energy exports too.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We're leaving tariffs on, but I will agree to take those tariffs off if we are able to do phase two.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
ROMANS: Yes, so still tariffs on about $370 billion worth of imports from China.
Now, the deal also includes better protection for U.S. intellectual property, better access for U.S. financial services into the Chinese market.
The U.S. trade representative, Robert Lighthizer, called this a massively good first step, but he said, are we in an idea spot? No.
Trump says the next round of negotiations will start soon.
Another trade win for this president, USMCA. The Senate is expected to pass that modernization of NAFTA later today. That deal includes some stronger rules of origin for auto parts, new minimum wage requirements for certain workers in autos, as well as new provisions for digital commerce and money to address the environment.
CAMEROTA: OK. Thank you for explaining all of that, Christine.
OK, so, happening now, Prince Harry making his first public appearance since he announced that he and his wife, Meghan Markle, will be stepping back from royal duties.
CNN's Max Foster is live in London.
So, Max, tell us about this appearance and what clues we can glean from it?
MAX FOSTER, CNN ANCHOR AND CORRESPONDENT: Well, it was a -- it was an event to promote the rugby league World Cup. That wasn't the very focus though, obviously. British media live streaming this event. They were all there out in force. But Harry didn't take any questions on this summit earlier in the week, this crisis family meeting.
He is now, though, in this period of transition out of his senior royal -- role as a -- his role as a senior royal. A bit of a tongue twister there.
But what's interesting about these pictures is, number one, how he comes across. He's looking pretty confident. He's always very good with the young people. A reminder really of what the royal family's losing here, this great, charismatic figure who always comes across well on TV.
But also these could turn out to be historic pictures because is this his last event as a working royal? We don't know how this is going to end up. The meetings are still ongoing. So this could be him leaving, his last hurrah as a senior royal.
The other question is, when does he see his wife again and son? We saw some pictures yesterday of Meghan out there in Canada, in Vancouver at a public event. She also looked pretty well as well.
I was told last night, though, that Harry's got some meetings in London next week. So he's not going to rush out there. Those meetings presumably, Alisyn, are linked to what sort of role comes out of these talks.
CAMEROTA: Max, it's interesting to try to read the tea leaves of their appearances, but we know you'll keep us posted. Thank you very much.
All right, well, the world has watched his every move and now CNN presents the back story of the most famous family, "The Windsors: Inside the Royal Dynasty" premieres Sunday, February 16th, at 10:00 p.m., only on CNN.
BERMAN: I said we're still writing the last few chapters.
CAMEROTA: Yes. Actually, we are.
BERMAN: All right, this explosive, new interview with a central player in the scandal that has led to President Trump being impeached. Lev Parnas, he's speaking and implicating the president.
NEW DAY continues right now.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
CAMEROTA: All right, we want to welcome our viewers in the United States and all around the world. This is NEW DAY.
We do have breaking news this morning.
An explosive, new interview that we will show you first here on NEW DAY.
Lev Parnas, the indicted associate of Rudy Giuliani, directly implicating President Trump.